What Jesus Really Meant When He Said: Do Not Judge Others

Lately, I’ve been addicted to TikTok. While Instagram is always a favorite, I have recently gravitated to the fun creativity of video makers on TikTok. I never know what I will see next as I scroll.

When I first subscribed, I got tons of Gen-Z videos, doing dances and other stuff that Gen-Z’s do. After a few searches, it wasn’t long until the algorithm showed me more videos I enjoyed, including those from #genxtiktok, #craftersoftiktok, and #christiantiktok.

Many Christian videos I watch are by people of all ages and stages of life. It’s encouraging to hear how they found Jesus, where God has worked in their lives, or what Bible passage was suddenly illuminated for them.

But unfortunately, I have also seen videos where Christians use the platform to cut down those who do not follow the Guidebook that followers of Christ do. These Christians condemn those who, contrary to the Bible, say the wrong things, do the wrong things, and live the wrong way.

I believe that’s not right.

Yes, there are many people in the world right now who need the saving grace and love of Jesus! Yet, they only follow what the world tells them is right and seek ways to live their own truth. They are searching for love in all the wrong places.

Courtesy of Obie Fernandez on Unsplash.com

Christians can argue and quote the Bible all day long to convince non-Christians that they are wrong. And a few years ago, after reading the words of Jesus in Matthew 7, I was convicted of this very thing.

Do not judge others, and you will not be judged.
Mathew 7:1 (NLT)

Many people (even those in politics) love to use this reference when anyone challenges their viewpoint. This happens especially when Christians try to convince these same people they need Jesus because what they say, do, and live is wrong. In retaliation, Christians will hear: “Well, your Bible says you aren’t supposed to judge me.”

In those circumstances, people who quote Matthew 7:1 have every right to quote it. Because …

They are right.

What Did Jesus Mean When He Said Not to Judge Others?

In Matthew 7:1, the word “judge” is the Greek word krino. It means that when we judge, we are choosing to make a positive or negative decision, or opinion about someone else.

In our country’s court system, everyone is judged by laws that are the same for every citizen. However, it is an unequal equation when Christians, who live by the standards of the Bible, expect non-Christians to live by the same values. Christians cannot make judgments based on something non-believers will not understand. It’s like conversing with someone from another country – and you don’t speak their language. It’s two different worlds.

Unless a non-believer’s heart is open to the Holy Spirit to receive God’s Word, they simply won’t grasp what they are told. So we shouldn’t be surprised when they insult us. 

To Hell in a Handbasket

Do we just let the world go to “hell in a handbasket?” How do we share Jesus with others yet not be judgmental?

Courtesy of Jon Tyson on Unsplash.com

When Jesus had dinner with sinners, it never states that He used the opportunity to preach to those around the table. No, He simply spent time with them and loved them. Many gravitated to Jesus because of His love for others, which was evident in how He helped and healed people. Many who were healed then followed Jesus and became disciples.

It is once a person receives love and healing
that Christ’s words will resonate.

Jesus’ command to us was to love others “So now I am giving you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, you should love each other. Your love for one another will prove to the world that you are my disciples.”

Instead of judging people by what they say, do, and live, we are to bring people to Jesus by what we say, do, and live. Instead of preaching “at” others, we are to love and meet their physical needs as our neighbors.

When others see our genuine joy and hope because of Jesus, they will realize their spiritual need. And when they do, they will listen because — through you — they have seen who Jesus is and what He can do for them . . .

By giving His saving love and grace.

Want to learn more? Click on the references below:

Matthew 12:36
I Corinthians 13:4-7
2 Corinthians 10:3
Galatians 5:13-15
Ephesians 4:32-5:2
Ephesians 6:12

All Bible verses link to BibleGateway.com for the reader’s reference.


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